Marine Link
Friday, January 28, 2022


Marine salvage is the process of rescuing a ship, its cargo, or other property from peril. Salvage encompasses rescue towing, putting out fires, patching or repairing a ship, refloating a sunken or grounded vessel, moving a disabled vessel in order to clear navigation channels, and raising sunken ships or their cargo. Equipment involved in salvage operations may include cranes, floating dry docks, and support vessels (such as tugboats). Commercial divers may be called upon to perform underwater tasks and monitor progress below the surface.

Protecting the marine environment from pollution from cargoes such as oil or other contaminants is often an important part of salvage activities. Usually the vessel or valuable parts of the vessel or its cargo may be recovered for its resale value, or for scrap. The vast majority of salvage operations are contracted to qualified seamen and engineers working as professional salvors. Usually, contracted agents expect no financial reward unless the salvage operation is at least partially successful.

If salvage is not performed under a contract, then the rescuer must act voluntarily and aside from any legal duty to act, other than the acknowledged duty to render assistance to those in peril at sea or to attend after a collision. If the owner or the owner’s agent is still on the ship, they can refuse offers of assistance. A vessel found entirely deserted or abandoned without hope or intention of recovery is considered derelict and is fair game for anyone who comes across it. It is not true, however, that the rescuer or salvor automatically becomes the owner of the property. The owner always has the option to reclaim his property by paying an appropriate reward.

Tags: Salvage

Photo courtesy Boskalis

Insurance Insights: Larger Vessels, Larger Exposures

The blocking of the Suez Canal by one of the largest container ships in service in…

Mike Jarvis with Lindsay Malen-Habib (Photo: ASA)

American Salvage Association Elects New Leadership

Trade group the American Salvage Association (ASA) announced a new leadership team…

The VB-10000 hoists the final section of the Golden Ray wreck out of St. Simons Sound. (Photo: St. Simons Sound Incident Response).

Final Section of Golden Ray Shipwreck Removed

The largest shipwreck removal project in American history is drawing to a close.On Monday…

(Photo: Canadian Coast Guard)

Weather Hampering Efforts to Board Fire-stricken Containership off Canada

Bad weather off Canada's Pacific Coast on Monday prevented a salvage crew from boarding…

The Zim Kingston caught fire a day after losing 40 containers while moored approximately five nautical miles from Victoria. (Photo: U.S. Coast Guard)

Fire Breaks Out on Containership off British Columbia

A container fire that broke out on Saturday on a cargo ship carrying mining chemicals…

(Image: U.S. Navy)

US Navy Awards Austal USA $144 Million Contract to Build T-ATS Pair

The U.S. Navy awarded Austal USA a $144 million two-ship Towing, Salvage, and Rescue…

Image by Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Govt of Pakistan (Twitter)

Pakistan Set to Remove Fuel from Stranded Cargo Ship

Pakistani port authorities plan to remove fuel from a merchant ship that ran aground…

The Seacor Eagle is staged with gear near the Seacor Power off Port Fourchon, La. The vessel is being used as stable platform to assist in salvage and pollution response operations. (Photo: Brendan Freeman / U.S. Coast Guard)

Seacor Power Bow Section Raised

Salvors have raised the bow section of the liftboat Seacor Power, which overturned…

(Photo: St. Simons Sound Incident Response)

Golden Ray Salvage Paused—Again

Salvage crews have once again paused operations to remove the Golden Ray wreck outside…

The Navajo-class (T-ATS) Towing, Salvage and Rescue Ship for the US Navy (Image: US Navy)

Austal USA to Design New T-ATS for the US Navy

Austal USA said it has been awarded a $3.6 million functional design contract to…

The Indonesian Navy is building a monument in honor of KRI Nanggala-402 and its sailors who were lost. (Photo: Indonesian Navy)

Salvage of Indonesian Submarine Ends but Questions Loom

Indonesia ended salvage efforts on Wednesday to retrieve a disaster-stricken submarine…

Contacted salvage crews tap into an above water fuel tank and start removing the fuel from Seacor Power, May 3, off Port Fourchon, La. (Photo: Brendan Freeman / U.S. Coast Guard)

Salvors Remove Diesel Fuel from Capsized Liftboat Seacor Power

Salvage crews have removed all diesel fuel from the tanks of capsized liftboat Seacor…

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